Republicans on the sequester: then and now –
Jed Lewison says Eric Cantor has outlined the GOP position on the sequester:
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor says he hates the sequester:
I don’t want to live with the sequester. I want reductions in spending that make sense. These indiscriminate reductions do not make sense.
But he doesn’t hate it enough to repeal it or replace it with something Democrats and Republicans can agree on. As a result, he says, Republicans will move forward with the sequester.
And we’re going to hurt a lot of people. And it’s up to the president, really, to act now.
So Eric Cantor, who voted for the sequester in the first place, now says it doesn’t make any sense. He says he’d like to replace it, but only with spending cuts that target Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and other social insurance programs. Cantor says that unless Democrats agree to such cuts, Republicans will move forward with implementing the sequester—even though doing so will “hurt a lot of people.”
Steve Benen felt the need to annotate Eric Cantor’s remarks about the sequester:
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) appeared on “Meet the Press” yesterday and presented an interesting argument regarding looming, automatic sequestration cuts. It’s so amazing, let’s annotate this one paragraph.
“You know, the problem is, David, every time you turn around, the answer is to raise taxes . And, you know, he just got his tax hike on the wealthy. And you can’t, in this town, every three months, raise taxes . And again, every time, that’s his response . And, you know, we’ve got a spending problem. Everybody knows it . The House has put forward an alternative plan . And there’s been no response in any serious way from the Senate or the White House .”
Ready for this?
 Democrats aren’t proposing a tax increase; they’re proposing a compromise including spending cuts and new revenue through closing tax loopholes.
 The new revenue from a slight increase in top marginal rates was the first increase in income tax rates in two decades. Once every 20 years is not the same as once “every three months.”
 “His,” in this case, refers to President Obama, who’s repeatedly offered congressional Republicans overly-generous offers on debt reduction. Indeed, that’s what he’s done “every time.”
Roll Call: Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California has urged Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio to cancel the planned district work period next week so both sides can work out a deal to avert the $85 billion automatic spending cuts under sequester. “Democrats are eager to work with Republicans to find solutions, not sequesters,” Pelosi wrote in a letter to Boehner on Monday.
White House spokesman Jay Carney: “The notion much propounded by the spin doctors on the Republican side that the sequester is somehow something that the White House and the president alone wanted and desired is a fanciful confection. The fact of the matter is, as I think you all recall in the wake of the passage of the Budget Control Act, it was the Republicans, including the Republican Leader of the House, who celebrated it as getting 98 percent of what they wanted.”
From the White House Fact Sheet: Sequester (click to read it all):